“If you voted for Donald Trump,you are a loser.”
“BJP supporters are Islamophobic scum”
The popular ideas floating around the internet, or in common discourse are definitely not always the ones in alliance with the power structures in place. Yet, some would say, political correctness, some would say, instruments of victimization of people who would not cater to the same.
Intolerance of intolerance is, after all, by this dialogue, an intolerance in itself.
What this discourse is largely based on is the problematic notion of “ political correctness ”. Diplomacy could be political correctness, as could towing the line careful not to offend a figure of authority. As a matter of fact, respecting the basic premises of marginalized demographics ought to be a given, not political correctness.
When individuals supporting the likes of Trump demand the right to have their opinion respected, what they are really demanding is the right to be sexist,to be racist,to be homophobic. In other words, the permission to disregard the basic rights of marginalized communities and ensure that these prejudices are rigorously institutionalized.
Some would even go so far as to say that openly discriminatory ideas are brave to endorse, that there is something inherently gallant in blatantly carrying forward systems of oppression that have been in power for hundreds of years.
It is not.
Being denied your right to be blatantly hateful is not attacking your agency. On the contrary, it is protecting individuals from the indignity they have been subject to for generations. It is shielding them from the position of power and privilege you command,that enables you to hold views disregarding their humanity.
Too often,the ideas considered popular and politically correct are merely ideas in accordance with humanity, with sympathy, with empathy and the values they breed – that of liberty, equality and fraternity. Popular ideas may have ulterior motives as their backing, they may have loopholes. Under those circumstances, by all means, call those out.
You have every right to critique, to question authority, to question majority. You do not have a right to hatred. You do not have the right to strip others of their rights.
And before you shrug off these issues as those not having no bearing on you and mere imposed political correctness, consider the lethal potential of apathy.
Consider just how much decidedly not looking is essentially the same as looking away,how much not being concerned about the gross violation of human rights all over the world is essentially just telling your fellow citizens of the world they do not matter to you. After all, third-party voters and non-voters did contribute to Trump’s victory – undermining the potential of hate which will come easy. Especially if you do not belong to a demographic that is selectively picked out and brutalized by virtue of their existence, every day.
So henceforth, if you share the meme mocking a Mumbai guy for dreading Tump’s presidency while not knowing details of the local political situation – consider this, his position as a person of colour,as possibly queer,possibly Muslim – as citizens of the world, can we not take offence?
There is a definite problem with South Asians who observe Trump’s presidency as an excuse for complacence, to overlook the issues in their own nations,but other than that, as individuals who already deal with a hundred messages reinforcing the idea that we are inferior, or we do not matter, can we not sit up and take notice when such ideas gain wide sanction and assume public office with immense powers.?
As a woman of colour, I cannot. Can you?
You might want to look at another perspective of this viewpoint discussed here :- Donald Trump, Brexit, and our judgements as a society